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Cimelia Photographica

From Graphical to Photographic Vedute

Thanks to the emergence of tourism in the 19th century, vedute of cities enjoyed a rise in popularity. The graphic arts profited the most from this situation because their ability to reproduce works put them in a position to quickly meet the increasing demand for views of significant buildings, squares, streets and also panoramas. From the mid-19th century onwards, photography became an increasingly stronger rival to the established reproduction media such as lithography and copper engraving. On the one hand, photographers were able to produce the desired views in significantly less time than a lithographer or copper engraver could have. On the other hand, photography was able to accommodate the wish of travellers for a seemingly authentic representation of the places visited, which was not based on a “subjective” artistic perception. The photographers, in turn, often based their choice of motives on the aesthetics of the graphic vedute. They often relied on already established and familiar perspectives, as illustrated by the view of the Piazza della Signoria in Florence, created between 1860 and 1862 by the French photographer Alphonse Bernoud. Bernoud portrays the view over the square from the same perspective that the Florentine copper engraver Giuseppe Carocci had previously used at the beginning of the same century for an engraving and which could be found in numerous guides to the city.


Giuseppe Carocci: Piazza della Signoria in Florence, lithograph, first half of the 19th century, 19.5 x 25.9 cm (inventory no. 86924)

Giuseppe Carocci: View of Florence from San Miniato, aquatint, second half of the 19th century, 38 x 56 cm (inventory no. 94223)

Domenico Amici: View of the Forum Romanum in Rome, copper engraving, 1845, 44.7 x 54.0 cm (inventory no. 94369)

Alphonse Bernoud: Piazza della Signoria with the Loggia dei Lanzi in Florence, albumin print, 1860-62. Board: 23.6 x 31.8 cm (inventory no. 456738)

Unidentified photographer: View over Florence, salt paper treated with albumin, around 1860. Photograph: 20.3 x 25.5 cm (inventory no. 103300)

Tommaso Cuccioni: View of the Forum Romanum in Rome, albumin print, around 1860. Board: 36.5 x 47.4 cm (inventory no. 407404)

Paolo Lombardi: View of Siena with Piazza del Campo, albumin print, around 1875. Photograph: 20.3 x 26 cm (inventory no. 517)

Paolo Lombardi: View over Siena from San Domenico, albumin print, around 1875. Photograph: 19.6 x 25.7 cm (inventory no. 197844

Luigi Armoni: View of Orvieto, albumin print. Photograph: 16.9 x 22.4 cm (inventory no. 464803)




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Alphonse Bernoud: Piazza della Signoria with the Loggia dei Lanzi in Florence, albumin print, 1860-62. Board: 23.6 x 31.8 cm (inventory no. 456738)

© KHI in Florence | 16.09.2021 20:46:27